Preventing Injury & Vehicle Safety

 

Arkansas and Tennessee have some of the highest rates of child and adolescent injury in the nation. Arkansas Children’s Hospital has made reducing the rate of childhood injury a high priority. Download the Home Safety Checklist from www.archildrens.org/ documents/ipc-homesafety.pdf or visit the Tennessee Department of Health at health.state.tn.us/healthyhomes/injury.shtml, and begin making your home safer as soon as possible.

Vehicle safety

Vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death in Arkansas and Tennessee for children and youth ages 1–19. Many of these deaths and injuries can be prevented. The Injury Prevention Center at Arkansas Children’s Hospital offers programs to educate parents on the importance of vehicle safety. For a detailed list of vehicle safety tips, visit www.archildrens.org and type “injury prevention” in the search window or visit the Tennessee Department of Health at health.state.tn.us/healthyhomes/injury.shtml. 

Car seats

Couple with child in car seat

The law requires that your baby must always ride in an approved safety seat when traveling. That means you must bring your baby home in a car safety seat that is marked “federally approved,” and the hospital will not allow you to leave without one. Ask your doctor, the hospital where you deliver or your health department about programs that loan federally approved car safety seats. 

Your baby should ride rear-facing until he is about 2 years old. When he reaches the highest weight or length allowed by the manufacturer for its infant-only seat, he should continue to ride rear-facing in a convertible seat until he outgrows the manufacturer recommendations.

To see a list of car safety seats and safety seat manufacturers, go to the American Academy of Pediatrics website at aap.org/healthtopics/carseatsafety.cfm.

Arkansas residents can visit carseatsar.org to find a certified technician who can help answer your car seat questions.

If you’re considering a used car seat for your child, make sure the car seat:

  • Comes with instructions and a label showing the manufacture date and model number.
  • Hasn’t been recalled (go to www.cpsc.gov/cgi-bin/prod.aspx).
  • Isn’t more than 6 years old.
  • Has no visible cracks or missing parts.
  • Has never been in a moderate or severe crash.

If you don’t know the car seat’s history, don’t use it! 

Resources

 

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